Hot Pockets Heiress Gets 5 Months In Prison In College Admissions Scandal


BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — The woman known as the "Hot Pockets heiress" has been sentenced to five months in prison in the nationwide college admissions scandal.

Prosecutors said Michelle Janavs, 49 of Newport Coast, California, worked with scam mastermind Rick Singer to help her daughters cheat on their ACT exams, and to build a fake athletic profile for her oldest daughter.

Janavs' family's food manufacturing company, Chef America Inc, created the Hot Pockets microwavable sandwich brand, Reuters reports.

In federal court in Boston Tuesday, Janavs was sentenced to five months, with two years of supervised release. She was also ordered to pay a $250,000 fine.

Janavs pleaded guilty back in October to one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering.

michelle janavs hot pockets

Michelle Janavs. (Getty Images)

According to US Attorney for Massachusetts Andrew Lelling's office, Janavs sent Singer's sham charitable organization a $50,000 check in 2017 after he helped her oldest daughter take a "controlled" ACT exam. Lelling's office said she did the same in 2019 for her younger daughter, wiring $25,000 and writing a $25,000 check.

In addition, Lelling's office said Janavs was set to pay Singer $200,000 to get her oldest daughter into the University of Southern California as a volleyball recruit.

"In August 2018, Janavs emailed Singer photos of her daughter playing volleyball so that Singer could create a fake athletic 'profile,'" Lelling's office wrote in a press release.

Singer crafted the false athletic credentials for Janavs' daughter, and USC athletics administrator Donna Heinel secured approval for her.

Janavs sent $50,000 to a charity Heinel chose, but was arrested before she could send the remaining $150,000 she agreed to pay Singer.

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(Photo: Mike Macklin/WBZ NewsRadio)


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